Should You Pay Off Your Mortgage Early?

by Meg Burke 11/03/2019

Deciding to pay off your mortgage can be a confusing decision to make. You might be wondering about how you would take care of other financial debts or emergencies should they arise. Deciding to pay or not to pay off your mortgage early should be a decision made by you. The economic circumstances around you should determine this decision at the time.

It is tempting to continue paying for a mortgage in bits because of the benefits homeowners enjoy. As a homeowner though, there are situations when you find yourself considering the ‘paying down' option. Before you make such a financial decision though, you should speak to your financial advisor and be certain it's the best decision to make. 

Pay off your mortgage early under any of these circumstances listed below:

Before retirement

So many people plan for retirement—it's a period when you want to be as comfortable as possible. Taking steps and putting things in place before you retire is one of the best financial decisions anyone can make. While making your retirement plan, it's advisable you consider paying off on your mortgage. The reason behind this is as soon as you come into retirement, your steady monthly inflow reduces (most of the time). You may have more available time on your hands to go on vacation and treat yourself out. Having the thought of mortgage payments over your head at this period might be a burden. Pay off the mortgage before retirement and reduce what you must worry about when you retire. 

When you come into a significant amount of cash 

When you get a large cash amount, and you have settled all your bills and taken out some for investment, if you still have enough left, it's advisable to use it to pay off your mortgage. Using an inheritance or insurance payout against your mortgage is useful, you might not get another opportunity to pay down that mortgage. However, your mortgage may have early liquidation fees which you have to consider. Where there is none, there's a higher incentive to pay off part or all of it.

Possible increase in the interest rate 

The fear of an increased interest rate on an adjustable mortgage would make you consider paying off your mortgage especially if it's at a period when you can afford the money.

Low risk-tolerance

If you just happen to be the kind of person who is not risk inclined and would rather have one investment as opposed to having several investments that might yield more increase, it's better you pay off your home's mortgage as soon as you can.

Minimal tax benefit

A lot of the time people drag their feet as regards paying off the mortgage early because of the tax advantage they enjoy from having a mortgage. If your tax benefit is minimal or none — meaning you are not benefiting from a tax deduction for mortgage interest — it's advisable that you pay off your mortgage. 

Paying off your mortgage is a personal choice that involves you looking at your whole financial picture to determine if it will be a wise decision. Speak to your financial planner for more insight.

About the Author
Author

Meg Burke

 Meg & Loudoun County: Back in 1993, we moved here from Pennsylvania, thinking we'd stay for a year or two -- now it's been well over twenty five! In the past I was a broadcast advertising rep (Philly market) and at-home mom, until in 2000, when I jumped into the real estate business. Even with all the ups & downs, I've loved this business ever since! I've raised two wonderful children in Loudoun County Public Schools (www.lcps.org); one is a recent VA Tech graduate, and the other graduated from UVA. I've come to know Northern Virginia well and truly enjoy calling Loudoun County "home." Northern Virginia, and Loudoun County in particular, expanded dramatically in the mid 2000's; but along with the rest of our nation, experienced the challenging real estate market contraction of the "great recession." Luckily, our area has been back in a solid growth trend in recent years, so we are seeing fewer distressed properties and both resale and new construction homes are selling well. Let me assure you: Even as it grows, Loudoun County continues to be a wonderful place to live! Where else can you live less than an hour from concerts at the Kennedy Center or Capitol Center, Smithsonian Museums, the AND the Appalachian Trail? Loudoun County Notes: One of Loudoun's strengths is that we have a broad-based economy. We are not just a federal government dependant suburb. For example, did you know that over 70% of the world's Internet traffic flows through Loudoun County daily? (https://biz.loudoun.gov/) Ask me about the 45 mile-long Washington & Old Dominion Trail, which is great for jogging, walking the dogs or even an all-day bike trek. https://www.novaparks.com/parks/washington-and-old-dominion-railroad-regional-park Do you enjoy wines? Loudoun County is home to award-winning vineyards, with a reputation that is growing every year. www.visitloudoun.org/things-to-do/wine-country/ Serious shopper? Then you must visit the Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets! The antique shops in Leesburg, Purcellville & Middleburg are fantastic. You won't want to miss my personal favorite: the Waterford Fair in October -- an outdoor juried crafts fair in historic Waterford. www.waterfordfoundation.org History buff? Gardener? Perhaps you would prefer to stroll the grounds of Oatlands Plantation, a National Trust for Historic Preservation property; tour Morven Park or Dodana Manor in Leesburg. The farm and garden tours each year are always fascinating and enjoyable. Country Fairs are still going strong in Loudoun County. The Leesburg Flower & Garden Festival in Apri (another one of my personal favorites); the Bluemont Fair in September; Octoberfest in Lovettsville;... These are just a few of the events to enjoy throughout the year. Loudoun County and Leesburg, the county seat, are frequently included in "best of" lists (http:\/\/money.cnn.com\/magazines\/moneymag\/best-places\/2013\/snapshots\/PL5144984.html ) (https://smartasset.com/mortgage/happiest-places-in-america) There is so much to enjoy in Loudoun. Come see for yourself. I'd be happy to show you around! There are so many reasons to enjoy living here, but remember, the market is still quite fluid and challenging. Let me help you navigate your way through the interesting and sometimes overwhelming resales, short sales, foreclosures and new construction. I take my profession seriously; and although I do have my bachelor's degree (U. Penn, back in 1981), I am constantly upgrading my professional education in order to provide you with the most informed and up-to-date real estate support. Please remember: whether you or your friends are interested in buying or selling, MOVE WITH MEG! Let me help you make this a positive experience for you -- both for your family and your finances!